Thursday, September 2, 2010

You Cannot "Make" a Buyer or Seller Do Anything



"Did you get the contract signed by your seller?” The offer expired yesterday!

"Why won’t your buyer sign the document?” We need it now for short sale approval!

"Your seller did not sign the earnest money release!” We’ll go to court.

Guess what? You cannot make your buyer or seller DO anything. You can relay a message. You can make a suggestion. You can advise they speak to an attorney. But you cannot MAKE them do anything.

This week I had two unfortunate calls from other brokers. One stated his buyer would go to court and it would be "ugly” if my seller does not sign a release of contract. The other broker called one of my agents and threatened that if our buyer didn’t sign a document, he would be in violation of the contract.

Well, you know what? That is not my decision nor your decision to make. That’s the buyer’s or seller’s decision. They can choose not to sign, they can choose not to respond by deadlines and they can choose to take no action. All you can do is tell them what the deadlines are (that they should be able to read on their own) or relay a request. Sure, you can relay a threat, too.

All too often I see agents act like attorneys. I see them get emotional and insert themselves into contracts. They are treading on dangerous territory. The Realtor Code of Ethics states we cannot practice law.


Article 13

Realtors® shall not engage in activities that constitute the unauthorized practice of law and shall recommend that legal counsel be obtained when the interest of any party to the transaction requires it.


So, skip the strong arms tactics. We all wish our sellers and buyers would comply with contracts and deadlines. Sometimes they don’t. Leave the deciding to the client.

It's Wendy!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.

Call toll-free 1-877-ITS-WNDY (1-877-487-9639) or local 850-650-7883 ext 204

Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

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